The date 5th May may not be decisive and symbolic to most people, but it carries its own and important significance for the graduates of Varna University of Management. This is the deadline for submission of the first major independent project of their life – their diploma thesis. A day of mixed emotions – satisfaction from a job well done, pride in the results achieved, joy from a successfully overcome challenge, but perhaps a little sadness at the fact that such an important stage in everyone’s life is about to end.
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” – words that carry a bright message and wisdom. Well, our graduates are already “armed” and ready for the life in front of them, for the upcoming successes and challenges.
But let’s find out more about their experience and emotions from the graduates themselves. Today we are talking to Denitsa Teodosieva – a 4-th year student in the “International Hospitality Management” Programme at Varna University of Management.
Hello everyone, my name is Denitsa Teodosieva and I am currently in my fourth year of study in Varna University of Management. I am about to graduate with a bachelor degree in International Hospitality Management.
Just a few days ago you submitted your final dissertation. What was the topic that you chose?
Yes, my topic was ‘Career advancement for women in the hospitality industry in Bulgaria: Factors that influence it’, and my hypothesis was that women experience work differently and face dissimilar barriers compared to men.
Why did you choose exactly this topic?
I chose it because the topic represents my future as woman working in the hospitality industry and I wanted to see what I am getting myself into. As well as to see if theories and statistics of women being more and more equal to men in the workplace are actually true in practice. My views in the beginning were negative, because I have been discriminated based on my gender and it was a very unpleasant experience. This experience made me feel sad, angry and at the same time it increased my desire to prove myself and my worth. However, through my research I discovered that the situation in the Bulgarian hospitality industry is rather positive. I guess you can conclude that my decision for taking upon this topic was both rationally and emotionally based.
How much time did it take you for the overall writing of the dissertation?
As a procrastinating student the most concentrated work I did on the dissertation was done in one month- April. However, because of the well-organized program of the university and my supervisor predicting my procrastinating nature I was collecting data and working on my research throughout my whole year of study.
Tell us about the obstacles you had to go through when writing?
The biggest obstacle I had to overcome was my general lack of experience as a researcher. In the beginning I wanted to talk about everything and research everything. Nevertheless, with the help of my supervisor I managed to tone it down and limited my research in order for it to be useful and successful.
Share with us an interesting or funny moment when writing your dissertation?
Interesting moments of my research were definitely the interviews I conducted with women in the hospitality industry in Bulgaria. I got to sit down with influential and well achieved women that were patient enough to talk to me and were genuinely interested in the research. A funny moment was actually after I submitted my paper I realized I had forgotten to include a small detail after the hundred checkups I did… But I expected for something like this to happen I am not the most detailed oriented person and I mostly keep my eyes on the big picture, so I often forget details like this.
What is the feeling of a job well-done?
Honestly, I will know how I did after I get the commentary and grade of my professors, I still feel as if I am not done and there is some anxiety going on. However, it feels good not to have to worry about how I am going to manage to write a dissertation.
What would you recommend to your colleagues that are about to write their dissertations?
First of wall, PICK A TOPIC THAT INTERESTS YOU! Seriously, please do that, because otherwise you will be sad and stressed in your final year of university. Secondly, read additionally about research methods and data collection, because for me that was the most difficult part, and I wish I knew more and understood things better.